5.9/10
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59 user 22 critic

Free Willy (1993)

When a boy learns that a beloved killer whale is to be killed by the aquarium owners, the boy risks everything to free the whale.

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(story) (as Keith A. Walker), (screenplay) (as Keith A. Walker) | 1 more credit »
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2,799 ( 1,006)

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7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Gwenie
Isaiah Malone ...
Vector
Betsy Toll ...
Passerby #1
Rob Sample ...
Passerby #2
Merrilyn Jones ...
Passerby #3
Mickey Gaines ...
Waiter
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Storyline

Fishermen separate a young orca whale (Willy) from his parents and he ends up in a fish bowl at a marina. Meanwhile, a street kid runs afoul of the law and gets caught vandalising the marina, but his social worker gets him off the hook (so to speak) provided he cleans up his mess at the marina. While there, he befriends the whale and teaches him tricks, something the trainer hasn't been able to do. But when Willy is a dud in front of the audience, the marina owner plans some bad things, and the boy and his friends must try to (*** MAJOR SPOILERS ***) free Willy. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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How far would you go for a friend? See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

16 July 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Liberen a Willy  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,868,829, 18 July 1993

Gross USA:

$77,698,625

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$153,698,625
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the film's opening, one of the whaling vessels bears the name 'Pequod', a nod to the whaling ship in 'Moby Dick'. See more »

Goofs

When Rae and Jesse were in sorting fish to give to Willy, Rae says that they give Willy the good fish and not the "bad fish" (fish that were cut up and had no head). However, Jesse is seen putting some "bad fish" in the good fish pile. See more »

Quotes

Randolph: [to Jesse] Willy. He won't look at Rae, or me. Maybe he sees you.
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Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Gorgo (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Will You Be There
(Theme from "Free Willy")
Written and Produced by Michael Jackson
Co-Produced by Bruce Swedien
Performed by Michael Jackson
Courtesy of Epic Records
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User Reviews

 
Underrated movie of a charming childhood adventure
5 November 2005 | by See all my reviews

Oh, this one is underrated here. The story of Jason James Richter's character trying to escape from a life of crime and missing prospects is way beyond the average. The growing affection for Willy is not even stereotyped or clichéd. It's a genuine bond that focuses on two outcast characters who slowly but surely come to experience true friendship and the value of trust. Jason's performance really appealed to me when I saw this movie as a kid. It is a sincere depiction of friendship, of a way out, of fighting for your values against all odds and of never giving up. Right, I'm grown up now, but this is one of the movies of my childhood I'd like to watch again, and I'm sure I'd enjoy it almost as much as back then. Jason James had very few acting appearances, but the Free Willy series assured him his place in movie history. His entire performance in here is sincere and straight, he doesn't laugh nor smile if it wasn't just natural in the specific sequences. His facial expressions and body language fit into the total frame as well. The story has some profoundly human themes to it. I can't help it, I think this one is both entertaining and deep, dealing with emotions and prospects of life, with integrity and courage in the face of danger.


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